The James Webb Space Telescope (sometimes called JWST or Webb) is an orbiting infrared observatory that will complement and extend the discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope, with longer wavelength coverage and greatly improved sensitivity. The longer wavelengths enable Webb to look much closer to the beginning of time and to hunt for the unobserved formation of the first galaxies, as well as to look inside dust clouds where stars and planetary systems are forming today.
Now that NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has been assembled into its final form, testing teams seized the unique opportunity to perform a critical software and electrical analysis on the entire observatory as a single, fully connected vehicle. Image credit: NASA/Chris Gunn
NASA now is targeting Oct. 31, 2021, for the launch of the agency’s James Webb Space Telescope from French Guiana, due to impacts from the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as well as technical challenges. Image credit: NASA/Chris Gunn.
This time-lapse video reveals NASA's James Webb Space Telescope is now a fully assembled observatory, and is accomplishing large scale deployments and movements that it will perform while in space.
In 2019, NASA's James Webb Space Telescope celebrated the full mechanical and electrical assembly of the world's largest, most powerful space science observatory ever built. Meaning that Webb's two halves have been physically put together and its wiring harnesses and electrical interfaces have been connected.
Following assembly, the Webb team moved on to successfully send deployment and tensioning commands to all five layers of its sunshield, which is designed to protect the observatory's mirrors and scientific instruments from light and heat, primarily from the Sun.